Curcumin for arthritis: is it effective?

Osteoarthritis is the most common form of arthritis, affecting more than 30 million adults in the United States. There is no cure, but researchers believe they have found a new potential treatment to mitigate its effects.

A new study shows that curcumin, a natural substance in the spice turmeric, can help improve the condition of patients with knee osteoarthritis. Researchers analyzed the effects of curcumin on 139 people.

Participants reported moderately severe osteoarthritis symptoms and received treatment with non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs). Researchers divided patients into two groups and took diclofenac or curcumin every month.

The results show that both treatments are good for health. Researchers said that 94% of people who received curcumin had 50% improvement in arthritis symptoms, and 97% of people who received diclofenac had 50% improvement in arthritis symptoms.

However, curcumin has fewer side effects. Some people taking diclofenac needed to treat stomach problems after the study, and none of the participants taking curcumin experienced similar adverse effects.

But before deciding to add more turmeric or seeking curcumin supplements, more research is needed to better understand how curcumin can reduce the symptoms of osteoarthritis. Future research should also focus on possible side effects after long-term intake of the substance.

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